For so many years now, the word “socialite” has been a regular in Uganda’s lifestyle Vocabulary. The Oxford English Advanced Learners Dictionary defines the word “socialite” as a person who is well known in a fashionable society and is fond of social activities and Entertainment.

Going by Ugandan standards, we shall describe a socialite as a person who loves very nice things, has lots of money to spend, goes to almost every party, has a very expensive lifestyle with very expensive cars, shows off money in Public, and goes for holidays abroad. We have had so many socialites in Kampala over the years and these include but are not limited to Mike Ezra, Bad Black, Katsha De Bank, Zari Hassan, King Lawrence, Sylvia Owori, Sue Ochola, Judith Heard, Ivan Ssemwanga, Brian White and so many others.


Have a lot of money, spend it and show off to all and sundry that you are wealthy. Whenever it is December, the term ‘Abasama’ is widely used in Uganda and is used to describe people coming from outside Uganda mainly in Europe and America, to celebrate Christmas. So you can also party at Club GUVNOR, give people an open bar while you and your crew sip expensive liquor like Johnnie Walker Double Black, Martini, Moet, and so on.

You can start organizing theme Parties where people drink, smoke, and show off to everyone that cares to know that money is not their problem. Zari Hassan together with her late husband Ivan Ssemwanga used to organize a party called The ‘White Party’ where revelers would eat, drink, and smoke anything at a small fee. At The 2014 Edition, they even flew in Tanzanian Superstar Diamond Platinumz. Also, another socialite, Sue Ochola also used to organize a party called ‘Arab Money’ at different clubs in town. You can also follow this trend and boom, you will be an overnight Socialite.

If you are going to be a socialite, then you have to cruise around in very expensive cars. This is a very common trend among socialites. Get yourself cruising in a Porsche Cayenne, a Porsche Panamera, a Mercedes Benz G- Wagon, a BMW X6, AN Aston Martin, an Audi Q6, a Range Rover Sport, etc., and all of them with customized license plates such as JH 1 for Judith Heard, IVAN 5, etc.

As a socialite, you must be involved in scandals. Many times we have seen people like Zari with unpaid Bar bills, we have seen Sue Ochola fighting in bars at LA Paronis, Mike Ezra was on so many occasions caught issuing bouncing cheques, Brian White has been accused in many sexual scandals, and so on. This leaves many wondering as to whether these are legitimately rich people or mere scammers. These scandals will push your name in the media.

As a Socialites in Uganda, you will have to attend almost all the big parties in town. This helps you to be noticed and grab media attention. You are sure to catch Judith Heard at ‘Blankets and Whines,’ Zari will always be at the ABRAYANZ FASHION AWARDS, Nyege Nyege, Wine Tasting at Sheraton Hotel, they will be at all Music festivals, Boat Cruise Parties, etc. They love parties. So attending parties on a daily will also help you to get noticed and respected in the showbiz world.

As a Ugandan Socialite, you will have to throw money around, wherever you go. On numerous occasions we have seen people like Bad Black splashing money in bars, at one point Meddie slapped a young man and compensated him with Shs. 500,000 on the spot. You have to attend Music shows in the VIP sections and sleep in very expensive hotels.

Finally, as a person who loves to become a socialite in Uganda, you need to have the media on your side, if you fail to lure them, at least have them on your payroll so that they talk about you and the activities that you do. That and more will seal your name as a Socialite in Uganda.

Let us look at a few socialites who have ruled Uganda’s Entertainment scene for a long time.


Mike Mulyowa Kato AKA Mike Ezra has been off Uganda’s social scene but he deserves credit because he made a name for himself for living large.  A very wealthy businessman who started out as a dancer in the 1990s, Mike Ezra is credited for always supporting the Uganda Cranes team. He was rumored to own a Boeing A380, a fleet of Ferrari Cars, and also wanted to buy the LEEDS FOOTBALL CLUB which played in the English Premier League. In 2010, Mike Ezra displayed a million dollars in cash before journalists in a press conference at Sheraton Hotel just to silence those who said he was running broke. He has since disappeared from Uganda.


Zarinah Zaitun Hussein Kiriggwajjo is a Ugandan, businesswoman and was born in Jinja. She was brought to the limelight by veteran Radio show host, Rasta Rob MC. A very wealthy woman owning colleges in South Africa, Zari owns many expensive machines like a Range Rover Sport, a fleet of Mercedes Benz cars, a HUMMER, and many others. Unlike many of her counterparts, she studied cosmetology in London and is still relevant today.






Ivan was a Ugandan who worked in South Africa as a businessman. He owned Brooklyn colleges in South Africa together with his wife Zari. He died in 2017.





She is a Ugandan model, businesswoman, socialite, and Philanthropist. She is always on runways representing Uganda, popping champagnes, and cruising expensive machines like a Bentley, her Audi Q5, and many others, all with customized plates of JH.




Shanitah Namuyimbwa AKA Bad Black gained fame in 2011 when she became an overnight Millionaire after defrauding her lover David Greenhalgh of 11 Billion Shillings. A self-confessed prostitute and mother, Bad black disorganized Kampala by partying daily. She has been linked to Nigerian musician Mr. Flavour and Rabadaba. In 2012, she was arrested on grounds of fraud and released in 2014. She lives a bit quietly in an apartment in Butabika.

A lot of mystery surrounds the source of their money, whether it is legitimate or not, what is sure is that they have the money and they love to spend it. Of course many are involved in illegal businesses, selling Gold on the black market, etc., and as many are arrested, other new ones come up, it is only covid that has limited them, but as soon as the economy is fully open, new socialites will come up. God bless.

By Vincent Sserunkuma

A Professional teacher and Writer.

  1. Hehehe, if that’s what it takes to be a socialite, we don’t want none of it… Crazy things to do just to be known… How about we plant a million trees in a day or stage free community soup kitchens or food fridges and be known by awesome works instead?!
    Interesting n bizzare write up!!

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